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Can You Make A Wasp Smile?

Excavating Seven Days In

By Mike Singleton - MikeydredPublished 2 months ago 3 min read
An AI Nightcafe Creation By The Author


This was a two hundred word piece from my blog Seven Days In, ten years ago. I saw it was getting some tractions so thought I would flesh it out a bit and share it on Vocal.

The music I have included is "Waspman" by the Who, a Keith Moon composition which was the "B" side of the single "Relay".

Can You Make A Wasp Smile?

For some reason, I am posting a lot at the moment. I don't know why it's not as though I have anything interesting to say. But was getting buzzed by a wasp and wondered if it makes them happy that they annoy and frighten people. Although wasp could be WASP, the acronym for White Anglo Saxon Protestant or the 8o's beat combo, famous for the ditty recommending you to be like Doctor Dolittle.

Anyway as the Ape of Wrath (blog now dead but some great articles by my good friend Chris Ball) stated wasps are the insect world's own football hooligans.

I remember as a teenager feeling a sharp pain in the sole of my foot, and looked and there was a wasp on it. That was a very bad place for the wasp to be, especially after it had stung me, shall we say it was not long for this plane?

I do find wasps worrying in enclosed spaces like on a bus, or in the house. I have not been stung for a very long time, but I do know that it hurts.

Often people regard wasps and bees as the same things, buzzing insects that sting, but any sensible person knows that they are not. A bee will only sting when it is threatened, a wasp or hornet will attack you because it can.

One is bad enough but swarms are downright scary. I once saw a column of wasps in Sedbergh, mesmerising and frightening at the same time.

I also saw a similar gathering of wasps outside the railway station at Settle. One sting will be painful, but imagine being stung by a swarm, that could probably kill you.

However, wasps are mere amateurs compared with hornets as this attack in Yorkshire states, when some runners had the temerity to disturb some hornets.

Hornets can be up to 2.2" (5.5cm) in length, so that's a big aggressive insect you don't want to get on the wrong side of.

Anyway, I have been wasp and hornet-free, so I chose a Jonathan Richman song to soundtrack this post, so life is good for me.

Although I chose a Who song to lead this Vocal article this is the Jonathan Richman song I originally included.

Some Internet Definitions

Wasp: any member of a group of insects in the order Hymenoptera, suborder Apocrita, some of which are stinging. Wasps are distinguished from the ants and bees of Apocrita by various behavioral and physical characteristics, particularly their possession of a slender, smooth body and legs with relatively few hairs.

Hornets are the largest of the eusocial wasps, and are similar in appearance to their close relatives yellowjackets. Some species can reach up to 5.5 cm

Bees are winged insects closely related to wasps and ants, known for their roles in pollination and, in the case of the best-known bee species, the western honey bee, for producing honey. Bees are a monophyletic lineage within the superfamily Apoidea.


Thank you for getting to this point on this piece of the archaeology of my own writing, Seven Days In does reveal the odd treasure, if you can describe my words in that way.

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About the Creator

Mike Singleton - Mikeydred

Weaver of Tales, Poems, Music & Love

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  • Randy Wayne Jellison-Knock2 months ago

    While I'm not sure I ever made her smile, I did have a wasp for a pet/roommate my junior & senior years of college. The dormitory was old, as was the heating system. No thermostats, just radiators with a boiler that was either off or on for the entire building. When it was on, the only way to regulate the temperature was by opening the windows which had no screens. That fall as the temperatures dropped, Wally/Wilhemena (I foolishly made the assumption it was male) flew in through the open window & perched high on the ceiling in the far corner of the room. She tended to stay there whenever I was around. I always left a tea cup with some water in the bottom for hydration while I was out during which time she would drink & hang out by my abundance of plants. In the spring, she flew back out. The next fall, she returned. How do I know it was the same wasp. She was comfortable with me. No longer hanging out on the far corner of the ceiling but rather buzzing lazily in front of me as I studied, sitting in my rocking chair. If not buzzing in front of me, she sat quietly on my chess table next to me. At night she slept on my pillow right in front of me. That's how I figured out it was female. Males live only a year. Females live longer. That lasted until mid-spring. One night I woke up thinking I'd been bitten by something. There was a small hole in the skin on my forearm. I had brought my hand up under my pillow as I slept & run my arm into her backside. She was buzzing right above me, clearly in my mind trying to figure out what had happened. When she calmed down enough to set down, I discovered I had broken one of her legs. Realizing it was no longer safe for her in my room, I put some extra nice treats in the tea cup, sat there & waited for her to enter, placed a sheet over top, carried the cup with her in it to the window, set them outside on the sill & closed the window. It was warm enough by that time for her to remain outside. Ever since then, every time I see a wasp I ask if they know Wally/Wilhemena. In my entire life I have never known a wasp to look or act angry without provocation, much like bees. Hornets are a different matter. They always look & act angry. I once spent a summer cleaning, scraping & painting windows at a nursing home where three of those windows meant straddling an active hornets' nest. That was an interesting summer. (I also had to take care of three stories of windows with a ladder that only reached two & a half.)

  • I always say "Hello" if I see any of them flying by hehehehe

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